To reach Vestmannaeyjar, located on the south coast of Iceland, we have sailed for 4 days and 4 nights, solid and long 92 hours.
Brego was effortlessly cutting through the sea and losing the sign of the Faroe Island with every nautical mile it swallowed. On more than one occasion I got confused, not entirely sure if it is time for breakfast or supper. The white nights became brighter and brighter, as we were heading north, towards the land of fire and ice. The only true indication was in coldness, growing during the night and easing on a day. Apart from that confusing sunset with a sun rise was easily done.
I felt both tired and impatient. I knew that this passage might be a difficult one. There was a storm looming around.
We were crossing the North Atlantic Ocean, but our small party was growing. Slawek and Robert joined us on the Faroe Island. It meant that our shifts will become rarer and less demanding. That each of us will be able to enjoy 8 solid hours of sleep, at least once every 24hours. Even thought our watches were not that frequent, they were still pretty difficult for me. The wind was growing, but luckily for us, it was still blowing in the right direction.
The emptiness of the ocean is arresting.
I have read about the long waves, but for the first time in my life I could see them, slowly rocketing our boat. To see them break, like they do in the sea, was simple impossible. You could look around, trying to reach the horizon, but you were never able to see the end of them. The simplicity of their body was reassuring. Like a constant feature, unbroken record, the calmness bathing your soul.
At some point I stopped feeling scared and silly.
I started trusting myself, even though I realized that my sailing skills are far from being acceptable. But the ocean brought calmness in me. I came to terms with the fact, that there is long road before I can call myself a sailor. Trust myself with a boat. But would it mean that I should not enjoy the whole experience?
When the wind broke 25 Mph I could hardly hold the steering wheel in a position.
Any position really. We were doing about 8 knots an hour and I could not believe how fast we were going! The long waves broke at least and the water changed its colour, tinting the ocean with deep greyish blue. The storm we could see later on on the horizon, went slightly different way, leaving us in peace.
The emptiness around us was growing. We did not meet any boat for at least 60 or so hours.
There was no land looming on the horizon. Marcin and Kuba were lucky enough to see a small whale, swimming near Brego, and few dolphins playing in the water. I slept during both events and could not believe I missed such an opportunity. The ocean decided to stay mysterious to me, not wanting to reveal its habitants.
The gulls which came to us later, made me smile.
They are truly incredible. The way they slept on the water, completely undisturbed, letting the ocean take them where it wanted. I wondered how they cope with a storm, but I suspect they are clever enough to avoid it entirely. They looked happy and impassive, not minding constant up and down.
Vestmannaeyjar showed itself later on, during my and Daniel’s shift.
At first I could hardly see it, but Daniel was adamant the land is there and I believed him. Suddenly full of hope I smiled and started dreaming again about a hot shower and a decent meal on the mainland. But Vestmannaeyjar was holding few more surprises for us…